That Winter, The Wind Blows Episode 14-15

I did this to myself.

I have no one else to blame for the misery I feel now.

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And so the feeling of claustrophobia that permeates the visuals of this drama overtakes everything else too – Oh Soo and Young are essentially stuck in the cabin, and what should’ve felt like a cathartic confrontation now feels like a dreary and tiresome ordeal.

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In the morning they go on a sort of “last date” or farewell type of thing, and whereas other dramas might have attempted to extract a measure of romance from the situation, TWTWB is content with simply letting the power of Young’s quite disapproval run loose.

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그 겨울, 바람이 분다.E14.130327.HDTV.H264.720p-HANrel.avi_snapshot_00.14.58_[2013.03.30_17.08.46]

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그 겨울, 바람이 분다.E14.130327.HDTV.H264.720p-HANrel.avi_snapshot_00.18.57_[2013.03.30_17.10.19]

Bulgoki cows! So cute.

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Oh Soo’s attempts at a date are frankly strange, but apparently he’s never had to say good-bye to anyone so bringing her to watch cows is his way of making it special.

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“How about we just say goodbye and part?”

I’m so with Young on this one. No one in their right mind can be happy even for an instant with anything that involves farewells.

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Young telling both Oh Soo and Wang-biseo to pack their bags and leave, with her customary mask of dispassion.

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그 겨울, 바람이 분다.E14.130327.HDTV.H264.720p-HANrel.avi_snapshot_00.22.29_[2013.03.30_17.11.31]

Wang-biseo asking why she must leave now, when Young has always known the truth about her.

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“Because when I’m able to see again, I don’t want you by my side”. Young’s conviction that she will be able to see one day is almost believable. Almost.

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What gets to me about this scene though, is when Wang-biseo finally agrees to leave and says, “You are still my child. And as a parent I must do as my child pleases.” It’s so gut-wrenching on so many levels, because this is the kind universal truth that always scared me about parenthood – the sacrifices that all parents are willing to make for their children; except she is not really her mother, and I don’t even mean biologically, but in context of simple human relationships, what kind of parent (aside from the caricature ones that dwell in Kdramas) would deliberately set-up her daughter for a life of disability and hardship? And yet, I can’t help feeling affected by the fact that Young is really all she has in her life.

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Oh Soo and Young do get to say goodbye formally though. Young urges him not to feel so guilty, she believes that he loved her. She loved him too, except she can’t let him stay by her side. I do prefer the shot of them standing like that to any superfluous words though.

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Number of people surprised by Oh Soo not taking the money after all? 0.

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Over the course of the drama, I’ve become rather desynthesized by Jo In Sung’s face but I found him extremely attractive in this one close-up. Just love his whimsical smile and the line of bracelet resting on the curve of his hand.

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This bromance had the potential to be exciting, but as the Russian saying goes, “that was long ago and not true to begin with.”

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Oh Soo sending a text to Moo Chul, calling him huyng and pleading him to end their conflict, as it was never really between them, and saying that they should go out for drinks at some point.

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Now, this is the sort of bromance that I can get behind.

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This scene depicting the parallel despair between Oh Soo and Young dragged on and on (in a rather obvious attempt to extend airtime) but I still found the last few shots extremely pretty and rather poignant; especially with Young sitting in front of television and smiling.

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그 겨울, 바람이 분다.E14.130327.HDTV.H264.720p-HANrel.avi_snapshot_01.01.58_[2013.03.30_17.17.15]

There really wasn’t enough misery in episode 14 to prepare me for what’s to come in 15. AND WHY DID NO ONE WARN ME (am obviously getting too good at avoiding spoilers).

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“You left without money just to look cool?”, asks Hee Sun.

There goes Oh Soo’s pride rearing its ugly head.

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Except his justification sort of makes sense – “I left that house with dignity. Because I love her. And she will get the surgery so she could see me one day. That’s why I left with so much arrogance. Because I know we will meet one day.”

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But then it devolves into some of the worst acting you will come across in this drama from Jo In Sung. “Why couldn’t I have just taken her money and left? Why did I make her fall in love with me?” The lines of dialogue are over-wrought to begin with, but Jo In Sung’s attempt at rendering them believable just makes it worse . It’s so clear when Jo In Sung doesn’t connect with his character – even mediocre actors wouldn’t fail with this scene so miserably. He is good when he is good, but when he’s bad…Let’s just look away.

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So, this is when you know something horrific is about to happen in a kdrama – when everyone laughs a little too hard at breakfast.

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Adorable blind girl leading Oh Soo to Young.

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I liked this whole sequence of Oh Soo following Young but I especially loved Oh Soo catching a glimpse of her through the window and that expression of hopeless longing.

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그 겨울, 바람이 분다.E15.130328.HDTV.H264.720p-HANrel.avi_snapshot_00.26.51_[2013.03.30_17.20.57]

그 겨울, 바람이 분다.E15.130328.HDTV.H264.720p-HANrel.avi_snapshot_00.28.44_[2013.03.30_17.21.14]

Ah, Moo Chul, do you know how much I despise martyrs who go around smirking and pretending they are bad? A lot, ok.

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그 겨울, 바람이 분다.E15.130328.HDTV.H264.720p-HANrel.avi_snapshot_00.30.15_[2013.03.30_17.21.26]

And when they get all sentimental about flowers? STOP BREAKING MY HEART, MOO CHUL.

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그 겨울, 바람이 분다.E15.130328.HDTV.H264.720p-HANrel.avi_snapshot_00.31.40_[2013.03.30_17.21.37]

It sort of started it with this phone call – the moment when I began to lose it. It’s the night before Young’s surgery and obviously she must be afraid, but she is so lonely –  you don’t realize how much she is until she calls Wang-biseo, seeking any measure of comfort, even if it comes from someone who has hurt her.

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그 겨울, 바람이 분다.E15.130328.HDTV.H264.720p-HANrel.avi_snapshot_00.35.51_[2013.03.30_17.22.09]

But If she allowed herself a moment of weakness with Wang-biseo, she won’t let it happen with Oh Soo.

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그 겨울, 바람이 분다.E15.130328.HDTV.H264.720p-HANrel.avi_snapshot_00.40.04_[2013.03.30_17.23.15]

I started crying when I realized she was imagining him, and by the time he got to the fairy tales, I was bawling.

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“Why are all fairy tales sad?”

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I haven’t really stopped crying until the end, except somewhere along the way, the tears turned angry.

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그 겨울, 바람이 분다.E15.130328.HDTV.H264.720p-HANrel.avi_snapshot_00.41.05_[2013.03.30_17.24.41]

Young is great as a character on her own, and works wonderfully as an emotional anchor, but I also wonder if it’s the power of Song Hyo Kyo’s acting alone that enabled me feel what I felt for her in this scene.

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그 겨울, 바람이 분다.E15.130328.HDTV.H264.720p-HANrel.avi_snapshot_00.41.38_[2013.03.30_17.25.06]

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Young chases everyone from the house and it’s clear she is going to kill herself, but I was still hoping against all hope, that she just wanted to be alone for some other reason. That there was something she needed to do by herself. But *sigh*, it couldn’t have been anything good.

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그 겨울, 바람이 분다.E15.130328.HDTV.H264.720p-HANrel.avi_snapshot_00.50.16_[2013.03.30_17.25.41]

Hmm, for a second I thought she was going to fall down the stairs, as an echo to her fear of Wang-biseo pushing her.

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그 겨울, 바람이 분다.E15.130328.HDTV.H264.720p-HANrel.avi_snapshot_00.52.47_[2013.03.30_17.25.52]

But no, she is resorting to a more classic method…

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Moo Chul coming to help Oh Soo one last time, but not before punching him a few times.

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I was too busy clutching my heart in dread and agony over Young to properly care about Moo Chul’s death. Sorry, Moo Chul, maybe next episode.

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Once again, TWTWB seems to have caused somewhat of a controversy (anyone else says it the British way?). People are displeased that Young has given up on herself, just when it seemed like she was set on the trajectory for recovery. This drama has always affected me on a purely emotional level, so I’m having a rather difficult time articulating my opinion on her suicide. And the emotions I feel are also very transient and puzzling. The only clear concepts that I can grasp at, is anger and hurt. Anger on behalf of Oh Soo because God, this man cannot lose another woman he loves. Hurt on Young’s behalf because she is trapped between death and living hell and I see no way out of it for her, except well, through suicide… I didn’t understand before. I mean, I understood that she felt lonely and trapped but I didn’t *really* understand. Now, after seeing her go through another cycle of betrayal, only to end up in the same place in her life – utterly alone, I’ve began to truly sympathize with her plight to escape from it all. I think all of us go through some periods when the prospect of loneliness (which never really disappears) is at its most terrifying but to experience it in the capacity that Young feels it…When she is about to go through an extremely difficult and dangerous surgery, and yet there is no one next to her, and she must be strong all by herself, all over again. Why should she? Does she own anything to this world? To Oh Soo? People consider suicide selfish, and then they hesitate to call depression or other psychological ailments selfish. But is suicide something a person who is as broken as Young, is in a capacity to stop? I really do believe it’s not a choice for her or a reversal to some state, but simply a manifestation of her pain, the natural progression of a disease that for many people has no cure.

Amusing, how just last week I was boasting that this drama hasn’t managed to break me yet whereas now, I’m realizing that I was led on by a Trojan horse. I let the the intensity of Young and Oh Soo’s love to infiltrate my sentiments, because it seemed innocuous at the time, but unawares to myself, I’ve grown to care about these characters to an impossibly dangerous degree. And I don’t really want to be.

I want to step out of this hell and simply observe it – feeling the heat but not getting burned by the flames. So strange that I would yearn for this considering how cheated I felt upon finishing Nice Guy. Perhaps, on some level, I feel like TWTWB doesn’t deserve this level of emotional attachment from me.

2 thoughts on “That Winter, The Wind Blows Episode 14-15

  1. My thoughts are all in confusion as well. Honestly, I’ve tried to come up with something to say, and couldn’t. I read the Dramabeans review and had to agree with HeadsNo2. I want the character I’m rooting for to care. But I totally disagree that it’s the same ol plot rearing its head.

    I think it’s pretty logical for a suicidal person to finally attempt suicide. Like newgirl said in the comments on Dramabeans’s recap, there are alot of signs of what she’s going to do, and while fans may want (me included) the “love cures all” ending, it’s probably much more realistic that Young is still suicidal, despite her love for Oh Soo.

    I’m just surprised she didn’t have other suicide attempts in the past before Oh Soo came into her life. Was her attempt to reach out to her brother before her last ditch effort at a life? Did she finally start to give up on her brother returning and that was the only thing keeping her alive?

    So many questions, and feelings. I think more and more this is a show that evokes strong feelings in people, one way or the other. Episode 15 made me feel down, and I don’t think I can get past my emotional response to look at the episode in a critical light at the moment. Just hoping I see the two main stars in a light romantic comedy next. Heck, I need to find a good romantic comedy myself to bolster my strength for the final episode.

    • I actually do think that love was curing it for her, she would’ve gotten the surgery if she didn’t find out that Oh Soo has lied to her. And it’s not that she would only do it for him, she did truly regain her will to live and in essence, has become strong enough to admit that she wants to live but she not quite strong enough to actually fight for it. I don’t think people realize how hard it is to go for a surgery like the one she is going for. Why should she go through this horror and ordeal? I’ve known someone who was very sick and they also hated the prospect of dangerous surgery/medical intrusion more than death probably. Maybe people who are not sick won’t really understand, but you have to possess a certain type of strength to say “ok, I will try to fight for my life even though it’s hopeless”. And there is also this phenomenon of society putting pressure on terminally ill patients to be happy in their last days or to stay strong or anything but to give up and despair, It’s a very sort of crippling pressure that makes the person feel 100 times worse. I know it’s a controversial thing to say, but in my opinion, if they want to go out angry or hurt or just to die with dignity through suicide…Well, then let them do it.

      People can argue that Young is not terminally ill and has a chance of survival, but again how can she be strong when she has no one by her side? And I agree with you when you say I would like the character I’m rooting for to be strong, but the way Young is right now is extremely realistic and sympathetic to me.

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